As the capital city of Canada, Ottawa acts as a hub for government exposure science and health research led by agencies such as Health Canada and Environment and Climate Change Canada. Ottawa is also home to an abundance of local universities who are leaders in environmental exposure and health research.
Located on the boundary between Ontario and Quebec, Ottawa is shaped by anglophone and francophone influences, as well as growing immigrant communities, epitomizing cultural diversity. The city is easily accessible by plane, and nearly equidistant between Toronto (a 4.5 hour drive to the west) and Montreal (a 2 hour drive to the east), making Ottawa a convenient meeting place for local and international attendees. Ottawa is also an easy 1 hour drive from the U.S. border to the south.
As the capital city, Ottawa is home to a rich array of monuments, museums, and landmarks, and cultural activities. Ottawa is home to the Rideau Canal, the only UNESCO World Heritage Site in Ontario, located across the street from the conference centre, and scenic cruises on the canal are particularly lovely in fall. Parliament Hill and the nearby Major’s Hill Park boast amazing views of government buildings, monuments, and the canal locks. Ottawa is also home to a variety of museums, including the stand out War Museum, National Galleries, and Canadian Museum of History (formerly the Museum of Civilization). The National Arts Centre, across the canal from the conference venue, hosts theater, dance, and musical performances. The Lansdowne Centre 10 minutes away hosts sporting events and concerts. Other nearby attractions include the outdoor markets and breweries in the Byward Market, the many restaurants and pubs on Elgin Street, both within walking distance of the conference venue. Further afield, Nordic baths at Le Nordic Spa, and hiking trails in Gatineau Park are both a 20 minute drive from downtown Ottawa.
Ottawa is blessed with an abundance of attractions that will enliven your visit no matter the time of year. Bask in the city’s wealth of historic landmarks — from the iconic Parliament Buildings to the Rideau Canal — all located within its downtown core; marvel at the architectural wonders that house national museums and galleries, before taking in their world-class exhibitions; and, soak in Ottawa’s natural beauty, the perfect backdrop for your next outdoor adventure.
If you want to explore more of Ottawa Attractions and things to do, visit Ottawa Tourism to see some of Ottawa’s best known highlights.